OK, I need some help. I’m doing a talk about the future of aviation to the British Air Line Pilots Association (BALPA). It’s essentially a trends talk, but I want to end on a slide showing a rough scenario matrix outlining four alternatives futures. I think it’s a no brainer (or maybe not?) that one axis takes into account the price of oil ( the deep driver being something else).
So what’s the other axis? In an ideal world it would be something technical or professional because BALPA is a professional association and trade union. I quite like degree of automation or something around business models, but I’m not sure.
What else is there? Maybe something around the expansion of low-cost airlines (maybe a link here with union representation, training budgets and so on?), level of substitution from other forms of transport, climate change (carbon costs), evolution of technology (especially UAVs), need/desire to travel (growth of telepresence through to terrorism), level of affluence (economy in general), airline industry consolidation or something around professionalism or reputation.
BTW, in my travels around cyber-space I’ve found a few quite good sources around the future of aviation. The best one, in my view, is the Future of Aviation 2025 another reasonable one is Rethinkng Aviation and there is also a Future Scenarios for European Aviation report, some 2050 Vision work from Airbus and something quite nice from IBM.